Qualcomm unveils next-generation mesh Wi-Fi networks platform

New modular architecture designed to bring high-performance, cost-effective Wi-Fi 6E mesh deployment to deliver wireless gigabit speeds throughout connected homes

With the home office now being the new office for millions of remote workers, office-grade connectivity is essential. Aiming to enable communications service providers (CSPs) to deliver such capability, Qualcomm Technologies has unveiled Immersive Home Platforms.

Its aim is to meet the demands of the new normal in the post Covid-19 working world, where one of the keys to companies’ success will be high-quality access, increasingly through home Wi-Fi, to applications such as video conferencing. “Before Covid-19, the proliferation of Wi-Fi-enabled products in the home and increasingly HD, 4k, and soon 8k video, meant an increasing focus on more capable Wi-Fi access points by consumers and service providers,” said Phil Solis, research director at IDC.

“During the Covid-19 pandemic, network needs became even more pronounced, with many Wi-Fi networks stressed by the shift to more work and education from home. Wi-Fi 6 and Wi-Fi 6E mesh network solutions such as the Qualcomm Immersive Home Platforms are critical to enabling Wi-Fi access point suppliers to provide the range, data rates and capacity now required in many homes.”

Kevin Robinson, senior vice-president of marketing at the Wi-Fi Alliance, added: “Wi-Fi’s popularity has created increasingly diverse and densely populated Wi-Fi environments, including home networks which must now support many demanding applications simultaneously. The capabilities of Wi-Fi 6E, such as gigabit speeds, low latency and high capacity, will benefit users where they now need it most and allow Wi-Fi devices to operate efficiently in the most dynamic home connectivity settings.”

Qualcomm says its Immersive Home Platforms are designed to enable CSPs to deploy Gigabit-speed wireless performance to every room in the home in small form factors. It adds that the devices are cost-effective enough to target low consumer price points, which is achieved through what it calls a novel modular architecture approach, significant advancements in network packet processing technology and an integration of Wi-Fi 6 and 6E wireless technology.

As home network performance has become mission-critical, Qualcomm says its Immersive Home Platforms are meeting the challenge to provide corner-to-corner Gigabit wireless performance, in an effort to ensure every meeting is productive, every classroom is engaged and every device is connected.

Representing the Qualcomm Tri-Band Wi-Fi 6 platforms within the portfolio, the Immersive Homes 310 Series is designed to simultaneously use all three bands of spectrum to support internet of things-class devices (2.4GHz), today’s legacy media devices (5GHz), and enable congestion-relieving migration of node-to-node back-haul traffic from 5GHz to the 6GHz band, while ensuring the network is prepared to support devices supporting emerging 6GHz applications such as virtual reality and live video sharing/streaming.

The dual-band series 210 Wi-Fi 6 platforms within the portfolio are designed to offer immediate and significant performance and cost benefits to existing mesh providers.

“We have launched the Qualcomm Immersive Home Platforms, a fresh approach to home networking leveraging high-powered Wi-Fi 6 and 6E, a fresh architectural design customised for home deployments, and advanced features designed to deliver Gigabit performance to every corner of the home,” said Nick Kucharewski, vice-president and general manager, wireless infrastructure and networking, at Qualcomm Technologies.

“Today, as offices, classrooms, movie theatres and everything in between move into the home, high-performance Wi-Fi has transitioned from luxury to mission-critical utility.”

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